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Driving parents around the bend!

Noisy and disruptive children are one of the main causes of road rage, a new survey suggests.

The study of 1,000 British drivers, carried out by the UKʼs leading used car supermarket Carcraft, reveals stressed-out drivers are blaming their bad behaviour on distractions from their children – with a third of men admitting to experiencing road rage only when their family is in the car.

However, men arenʼt the only ones seeing red on the roads – a quarter of women drivers also admit to losing their temper during the daily school run, with squabbling kids in thebackseat and extra cars on the road adding to their stresses.

The good news is, only one per cent of drivers claim they ever get angry enough to takeout their anger physically, with women turning anger inward and suffering from shortness of breath, tense muscles and raised heart rate. Men on the other hand are a little more obvious, displaying their distaste with swearing and fist waving.

When surveyed, women – contrary to the old adage of women being the ʻfairer sexʼ -admitted to being much less tolerant than men about traffic jams, weaving motorbikes andrudeness, with men more likely to exercise kindness to others by giving learners and oldpeople an easy time and a wide berth.

Psychologist Mike Guttridge comments: “Having the kids in the car is distracting and, likebeing on the phone, may affect reaction times to stimulus on the roads. Weʼre all naturally protective of our families, so if we are the victim of bad driving, or just running late and abit stressed, we may have an adrenalin surge, which is expressed as road rage. Women tend to be less aggressive than men, so its no surprise they female road rage is triggered by a protective, ʻlionessʼ instinct.”

The single biggest culprit for evoking anger in both sexes was revealed as two-a-breast cyclists, which a third of drivers (33%) claimed annoys them. However, despite people admitting that there are certain things that make them angry when driving; dangerous driving (20%) and tail-gating (28%), over half (51%) of people surveyed claim to exhibithappy driving behaviours such as allowing other cars out often in queues and waving tosay ʻthank youʼ to other drivers.

Julia Dallimore, head of marketing at Carcraft, says of the survey, “The results of the survey werenʼt entirely surprising as most parents will know that driving the kids can reallydrive mums and dads round the bend! The good news is, Britain does seem to be driving happy, with physical acts of road rage very rare and only four per cent of drivers claiming to experience road rage on a regular basis.”

Aside from screaming kids increasing the likelihood of road rage, the survey also revealedwhat makes drivers smile with the road to happiness for UK drivers being made muchbetter by playing their favourite music (23%), driving with a loved one (25%) and no trafficjams during their journey (29%).

To alleviate some of the stresses associated with car ownership and to keep Britain driving happy, every Carcraft car undergoes a 120 point pre-delivery inspection by an experienced mechanic and each car is HPI checked for total peace of mind. Carcraft also offers 1 yearparts and labour guarantee, free servicing and MOT if needed in the first year, as well as 1year RAC roadside assistance for free.